The Red Sox don’t play good defense.
For how good the Red Sox are on offense, there equally as bad on defense. The Red Sox were 29th in the league and fielding percentage and were second in the league and errors (108). Third baseman Rafael Devers was fourth in the league in errors with 22.
Bobby Dalbec has 12 errors and he was called up in August. Kyle Schwarber was a poor defensive catcher and a poor defensive outfielder before his Boston days and hasn’t got much better at first base. This is quite possibly the worst defensive playoff team we’ve seen in years.
The Red Sox don’t have the same pitching compared to postseasons past.
And, as mentioned, the Red Sox are having a down year with their pitching. How down? Of their 14 pitchers who logged 40+ innings this season, only four of them had a WHIP under 1.20 and none had a WHIP under 1.10 (Houston had six under 1.20 and two under 1.10 FWIW).
Teams routinely hit against Boston pitching in clutch situations (sOPS 108) over a 162-game season. And not every team is as good offensively as the Houston Astros.
This will be similar to the ALDS series against Chicago. If the Astros can stay disciplined at the plate and don’t chase, the numbers say this Boston pitching staff will give up some big hits. And this defense might even give the Astros an extra run or two.